Defamation of Character Attorneys Know how to Analyze Your Case

November 10th, 2011

Welcome to Defamation Law Radio.  My name is Enrico Schaefer.  I’m a defamation of character attorney specializing in internet and technology law, defamation on the internet.  A defamation of character attorney can help you understand whether or not you have a claim or a defense when there is an issue of defamation of character on the internet in play.

On the plaintiff’s side, you need to understand whether or not the content, the posting, the publication of the false statement of fact qualifies as defamation under state law, whether you’re in California, Michigan, Florida, Colorado, Utah, wherever else, every state has its own law and you need to understand whether or not you can meet the elements of defamation of character under your particular state statute or common law.  So the first thing you need to do on the plaintiff’s side is understand do you have a potential claim for defamation of character.

On the defense side, if you are wrongfully accused of defamation of character on the internet as a result of something that you have posted on a website, a comment, a review site such as Yelp or Complaints Board or Ripoff Report, if you have been accused of defamation of character on the internet by a plaintiff through their attorney, you need to understand what your defenses are.  So a defamation of character attorney can help you understand what state law defenses will exist, whether or not there is an Anti-SLAPP statute in play, whether or not the statement potentially does qualify as a false statement of fact, whether or not the statement, in fact, impugns someone’s reputation, and the other defenses that are going to go along with privilege and the standard of negligence or recklessness in terms of whether or not you should have known the statement was false, if, in fact, the plaintiff is alleging the statement is false.

So, under any scenario, whether you are a plaintiff who is looking at suing for defamation of character, or you are defendant who needs to defend against a claim of defamation on the internet, the first thing that you need to do is get yourself educated.  So, you should follow these steps.

Number one, you should do your own research.  The beauty of the internet and Google is that you get to go out there and educate yourself, so plug in some search terms such as internet defamation, defamation of character online, web defamation, add the words attorneys or lawyers and see what is out there.

The next thing you need to do is contact a defamation of character attorney who specializes in internet defamation, so they understand the back-end technology that’s involved as well.  And you need to start asking questions such as:  Does this statement qualify as defamation under state law?  What can I do about defamation of character on the web?  What are my defenses to a defamation of character claim made by a plaintiff’s attorney who’s saying that they are going to file a lawsuit against me if, in fact, I don’t respond to a defamation of character threat letter which I have received?  These are the types of questions you need to ask your attorney in order to understand what your options are and how you might approach the matter and, of course, from every client’s point of view, how much it might cost in order to bring a defamation claim or defend against a defamation claim?

So, contact attorneys and get information, get yourself educated.  If you are plaintiff, the next thing you’re going to need to do is decide whether or not you want to send a defamation of character threat letter or proceed right to a defamation lawsuit against the alleged wrongdoer.  If you’re defending against a claim of defamation of character, you need to understand whether or not you should respond to a threat letter sent by an attorney to you?  If you are anonymous, can they identify you?  What might happen if you do respond?  What might happen if you don’t respond?  These are the types of issues that are going to be important to you.

My name is Enrico Schaefer.  I’m an attorney specializing in internet law.  I am an internet law attorney.  I also handle defamation cases online and can help you understand where you stand on a defamation issue when it occurs on the internet.  That’s all for today, signing off, we will see you next time on Defamation Law Radio.